BayAreaHoopz wrote:I could easily say the same thing about how many games you've actually watched that season. If Baron Davis didn't come back along with Stephen Jackson, with Ellis as the starting point guard..this team wouldn't of made the playoffs. So, would you call him a key player? I do concur that he was a key to their 48 win season, but was he the best player on that team even though he scored 20 points a game? Nope he wasn't and it can be argued if he was even the second best player next to Baron Davis. Yes, this is a team sport. Is Ellis really a team player? If you've watched as many games as you say you did, then you would see that is also debatable. Using Nellie's coaching plan as an excuse to his lack of defense isn't going to cut it either. I'm sure Nellie didn't tell him to not play defense or to force shots over 3 or 4 defenders. I guess we'll all have to see how he plays under a coach like Mark Jackson.
Ok so because Monta, J-Rich (the number 1 option in that period), Harrington and Biedrins weren't carrying the team that means none were key players to the We Believe roster? Only Baron and S-Jax mattered according to this form of analysis. A team like that is what I would equate most closely to this years Nuggets. No superstars, but dependent on a rotation of 7-8 athletic guys who all made a solid impact in their system. If their 2 key cogs in that went down, they would hit a rough patch. When everyone was healthy and we could run out 7-8 guys, we won something like 12 of the final 14 to make the playoffs.
That year of the We Believe Warriors is an interesting one. Monta was by far our most efficient scorer (besides Biedrins). Jackson and Baron scored as many points, but both were guilty of pounding the ball into the floor and chucking. Baron was the distributor and could go out and defend SGs. He also brought leadership and swag. Jackson was much like Baron. He was a fearless leader who made big plays and usually would defend the opposing teams' best player. However, the 2nd half of that year, both Jackson and Baron's stats started going down, and one of the only reasons we were able to contend for a playoff spot so late in the year was because Monta being such an efficient 20-25 PPG a night. He may not have been our most versatile player, but as far as performing, Monta was our best player at times that season.
Are you saying that playing for Don Nelson doesn't make a players defensive stats look worse? Of course they do. It's a defensive system based completely on gambling in order to create fast break opportunities. Also, because besides an often-injured Turiaf and Udoh, we have had no one who can defend the post for years or protect the paint. Guards like Curry and Monta are forced to abandon their mean and double the post any time they feed it. Nelson also loved running lineups of Monta, Curry and CJ out there where Ellis would have to guard SFs. Sorry, but Nelson's lineup patterns and overall defensive philosophy (Keith Smart was the person who coached this in Nelson's years and again himself as HC) ARE responsible for making their players look like bad defenders.
However, you are right in that is not a great excuse. What I attribute more to his poor effort defense is minutes. I don't know how much basketball you've played in your life, but if you are playing 40 of the possible 48 minutes of full- court basketball, and your teammates are constantly looking for you to bail them out on offense or create their shots for them, you are probably going to take some possessions off on defense and get burned a lot on defense. Even if you're a professional athlete. And it's not like it's just SGs we get abused by. How many frontcourt matchups does our team win? How many and 1's does Curry give the other team with stupid reach fouls on the fast break? If you don't hold others responsible (especially when they are more responsible for our overall TEAM defense) then you are just being a Monta hater.
And forcing shots over 3-4 defenders? What are you watching? If anything, what Monta needs to cut out is his heat check 20 footers he tries to take off the dribble. When he gets into the paint (The only time an NBA team would commit 3-4 players to one guy) he's actually the most efficient guard (maybe it was top 3 I forget) in the NBA at scoring, despite being straight up robbed of multiple foul calls per night.